Grandchild of the Month

written by Sherry Schumann
9 · 26 · 22

My friend, Susan, was troubled by her visits with her grandchildren. It wasn’t chocolate cupcakes smashed into the carpet, crayon marks on the kitchen counter, or children’s voices reverberating through the house. The troubling part was she never had one-on-one time with any of her grandchildren. She knew them as a sum of the whole, not as individuals: six grandchildren under the age of six, four grandsons and two granddaughters.

In order to create time with each grandchild, Susan enacted a “Grandchild of the Month” plan.

Here are the steps she followed:

  1. Choose a grandchild for each month on a rotating (but never predictable) schedule. The selection isn’t merit-based, because a grandparent’s love is unconditional.
  1. Design a special day, keeping in mind the grandchild’s age, interests and passions. The day doesn’t have to break your bank account, either. Some of Susan’s ideas included hiking the trails at a county park, baking cookies in grandma’s kitchen, visiting a petting zoo, discovering a new playground, attending a puppet show, and visiting Thomas the Tank Engine, which was a facsimile at their local train depot.

    Susan laughed telling me a story about the first time one of the twins was Grandchild of the Month. He was two at the time. Before walking out the door to the puppet show, he turned toward his brother and said, “Me go. You stay.”
  1. Prearrange your date with the grandchild’s parents. You don’t want to show up at the house, only to discover your grandchild has gone to a soccer game.

  2. Shhh! Be careful to keep it a secret until the special day.

  3. Sneak over to the house of the unsuspecting grandchildren during the predawn hours of the special day and place a “Grandchild of the Month” sign in the front lawn. Susan used a sign similar to the Yard of the Month signs popular in many neighborhoods and decorated it with colorful streamers and balloons.

  4. Slip home quietly and wait for a phone call from your grandchild. According to Susan, you won’t have long to wait. The phone call will begin something like this: “Grandma and Grandpa, guess what? There’s a sign in my yard…”

  5. Grab your car keys, dash to your grandchild’s house and let the celebration begin! (Or wait until the designated hour, depending upon the activity you have chosen.)

Susan’s grandchildren are now in high school and college. When I asked Susan how Grandchild of the Month changed as her grandchildren got older, she said that Grandchild of the Month became Grandchildren of the Month. Her grandchildren wanted to celebrate with their cousins, and they were more than willing to travel. Their road trips included attending GrandCamp in South Carolina and whitewater rafting in West Virginia. 

I am thankful for Susan who adapted the idea of Grandchild of the Month from another grandparent. If you have a creative idea, which has enhanced your grandparenting journey, please send your idea to info@christiangrandparenting.com.

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Sherry Schumann

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